You write atleast multiple emails everyday at office. If you are in a customer facing or sales role, email is one of the fastest ways for you to create business opportunities. But how much has your response rate been? Most likely less than 5% for a mass email campaign. You probably never knew how to write an attractive email that would excite your prospect.
Or you have already tried a few methods, but failed. This article will take you through some of the conventional as well as unconventional ways to make your emails more engaging and interesting to your prospects.
Here, I am focusing on mass email campaigns, hence not looking at how you can personalize your emails. Also, I will start with some of the most common techniques, and then later discuss a few innovative ones.
So here we go.
1. A subject line that directly addresses a need
Business leaders get tons of emails everyday. And you only got a few seconds to catch their attention through your email. Also 47% percent of email recipients open an email based on the subject line. So make the first impression the best with a title that hits the bull’s eye by addressing one key pain point of the customer.
For this, do enough research on the industry or domain, and come up with a common goal or pain point across organizations in your service area.
For example, if you are a company that provides tax and audit services, your email campaign should address a common problem in the sector, say ‘changing tax regulations in country X’. And the title of your email could be ‘We can help you face the changing taxation rules in your country to ensure business continuity’.
Come up with similar theme and title for your email campaign as well. Leave a comment if you need help in doing it.
2. A catchy beginning
If you got the title right, the next best thing to do is to have an awesome starting sentence(s). Given that – on an average – only 16% of the recipients open an email, it would take an impressive first couple of lines to take things to the next step.
I would always suggest to include a brief or indication of the solution to the problem you mentioned in the subject line as the first few lines.
Let us take the example of the tax and audit firm. The first couple of lines could be as given below:
“We at <company X> have a platform with an underlying rules engine that effectively captures all the updated rules and regulations. This would help you seamlessly integrate these changes into your business operations”.
You may even prefer to add the above sentences before the salutation to jump into relevant content faster.
Another way to catch the reader’s attention is to start with a sentence that establishes your credibility. An example of such a sentence is given below:
“Survey X names our company as one of the best tax and audit firms in country Y, that thrives to solve customer issues leveraging our state of the art compliance platform”.
You may come up with your own way of stating your solution to the discussed problem. The idea is to prompt the reader to go through the rest of the content.
3. Short and relevant body
You may already know this. An email is not a place to write a story. Your email body should neither be too short, nor too long. Ideal would be finding the middle ground. You can use your experience and inputs from your colleagues who have traveled the same path to find the right length for your emails.
However, as a general rule, your email could be structured into an introduction, body and conclusion (with some call to action). You can choose to limit your introduction to the two initial catchy sentences. In the body you can explain your solution briefly. Conclusion can include a call to action to improve your chances of response.
Call to action should not be plain – like ‘click here to know more’. It needs to display some value to the customer. A good example would be ‘Click here to see how we did it for one of our largest customers’. You may use the link to collect customer details and share say a sample case study.
There is no need to highlight the importance of relevance. It starts from the subject line. Leverage your info from research to make the email as relevant as possible to the reader.
4. Visual content
Text is boring. And nobody wants to read a long array of words, especially if you are trying to sell something. So make your email visually appealing. Following are a few ways in which you can do this:
- Add an infographic: Represent your content in an attractive infographic with clearly visible messaging.
- Share a video: Videos are very effective in conveying the right message in a short time. If you are unable to attach a video file, you may provide a link in the body. You can also create a video in PowerPoint Slideshow (ppsx) format to send it as an attachment.
- Share a collateral: This is suitable for explaining product and solution features.
You can also create your text with shorter paragraphs to make it more readable and less clumsy.
5. Highlight your credentials
Unless, you are an Apple or Bank of America, or any such well established name, you need to introduce your company well. But don’t make the intro too ordinary like ‘we are into selling tax and audit services’. Instead use something like this:
“We help hundreds of customers globally to fulfill their tax and audit requirements and effectively solve business problems”.
Here, by mentioning the number of customers in the introduction, you are sounding more credible. This generates more interest in the prospect. Make sure you state numbers or info that are impressive enough.
Also, remember to focus on any credential pertaining to your prospect’s industry. For example, if you are an IT services firm contacting a prospect in the manufacturing industry, you could write something like this:
“Our company has helped 10+ manufacturing companies like you, to smoothly manage their shop floor by implementing IoT (Internet of Things) to increase productivity by more than 30%”.
The idea is to instill more confidence in the prospect about you for a probable future business relationship.
6. Make your designation look fancy
In majority of the companies, email campaigns are run by managerial level employees, unless you run a business of your own.
But people like to feel important, and this reflects in their professional life as well. And they give more attention to emails from people who are as senior and experienced as them.
So, irrespective of who runs the campaign, the sender of the email has to be a senior leader. Somebody at a Vice President or Director level. You can either get somebody at that level to send the emails, or modify your own designation to make it look like a leadership role.
You could choose to include the details of the sender in the signature. If you are using an email automation tool like Mailchimp, better give a one liner introduction of the sender in the beginning of your email.
7. Create a stunning LinkedIn profile and link to it
This is kind of derived from point #6, but has more useful outcomes. If you are able to generate a decent level of interest in the reader by using the above 6 techniques, it is very likely that he/she would want to know more about the sender.
But hardly anybody takes the time and effort to go find you on LinkedIn. So, you need to take them there by providing a link to your profile in the email.
When you do this, make sure you have an attractive profile. Apart from your professional efficiency, try to include your contributions to any social cause or community service. Many customers – especially European companies – value such activities a lot nowadays.
Another powerful technique to make your profile attractive is to position yourself as a thought leader. Highlight any talks you have delivered, or panel discussions you were a part of. This helps establish your ability to be a strategist and visionary. To learn more about creating good LinkedIn profiles, have a look at The 21 steps to create an awesome LinkedIn profile.
A recent trend to highlight the details of the sender in the email has been to add lines like this:
“Know more about my experience working in transformational projects here”.
You could choose your favorite method. But you get the intent here. Only the final result matters. You could do whatever it takes to convert a prospect into a customer.
Those are my 7 tried and tested ways to help you convert your email campaigns into tangible business. Try these out.
Are you currently using email campaigns for your business? Let me know in the comments section. Also feel free to share any other thoughts and views.